The Basic Skills Agency will be holding its Early Years Conference on Thursday 3rd February for teachers and early years practitioners across Wales to look at early language development. The conference will launch the Agency’s new early years campaign, targeting parents and encouraging communication with babies and young children.
Speakers at the conference will discuss the work that is taking place across Wales to encourage language development in the crucial early years before children start school. The conference is an important aspect of the Agency’s efforts to address the first goal of the National Basic Skills Strategy, that “no child will start school unprepared for learning”.
The conference will take place from 10.00am until 3.30pm on Thursday 3rd February at the St David’s Hall in Cardiff. A copy of the programme is attached. Members of the media are invited, please inform Rhian Hortin on the number below if you wish to attend.
Notes to Editors
- The first phase of the National Basic Skills Strategy for Wales was launched in April 2001. Since that time the Welsh Assembly Government has allocated £40 million for the Strategy. The Basic Skills Agency has been overseeing the implementation of the National Strategy on behalf of the Welsh Assembly Government. Phase 2 will be launched in April 2005.
- The Strategy aims to provide a coherent approach to raising standards of literacy and numeracy in children, young people and adults. It involves a number of specific measures and partnership with a range of organisations.
- The campaign features press and outdoor advertising, as well as three TV adverts in English and Welsh. The adverts carry the strapline “Talking to your children can make all the difference”. The television adverts will be appearing on ITV and S4C until 20 February.
- The adverts promote a free pack that parents can phone-in for, which contains colourful materials for parents and children to use together and advice for parents on encouraging their child’s speaking and listening skills. The telephone number is 0845 345 5363.
- The Basic Skills Agency is the national development agency for literacy and numeracy in England and Wales. We are funded primary by the Department for Education and Skills (DfES) and the Welsh Assembly Government. Our mission is to contribute to raising standards of basic skills in England and Wales. Our aims are to develop approaches that most effectively improve standards of basic skills and disseminate good practice. Our Patron is HRH The Princess Royal, the Chairman is Garry Hawkes CBE, and the Director of the Basic Skills Agency is Alan Wells OBE.
- We define basic skills as ‘the ability to read, write, and speak in English or Welsh and use mathematics at a level necessary to function and progress at work and in society in general’.
- For further information please contact Rhian Hortin or Anna Thame at the Basic Skills Agency on 020 7440 7788 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. For out of hours media enquiries please call 07776 132226.